Music is a language unlike any other. It is, as Louis Armstrong said, that music is life itself. Or in other words, it is a medium of communication without boundaries. Unlike conventional languages, which are only understood in certain areas, the language of music is universal. Hans Christian Anderson was extremely apt when he said that in the places where words fail, music speaks, and truer words have never been spoken. Millions of people around the world share a love for music.
And it doesn’t just stop there. Music is such a captivating art that many people wish to learn to play it. Some people have a love for particular instruments like the drums or the guitar, while others are good with their vocals. Either way, learning to play music is somewhere on most people’s bucket lists. If you share this passion and want to start learning, what are you waiting for? You don’t even need to enroll in professional classes nowadays because the internet is the most comprehensive teacher out there, and it is completely free.
Here are a few tips for you to facilitate your journey of learning to play music:
1. Decide where you want to start
The world of music is vast and diverse. Obviously, you can’t master every aspect, which isn’t anyone’s ambition either. Therefore, the best place to start is by choosing the type of music you want to learn. The first decision to make is either to go down the route of learning vocals or instruments. In vocals, there are hundreds of categories like pop, metal, rap, etc. Similarly, instruments include flute, drums, and guitar. The Sloan School of Music offers not just musical instruments, but lessons that can clarify the decision-making process for you.
It is important to make this decision before you start learning anything. You may want to explore different vocal genres or instruments, but it is advisable to start with the one you are most passionate about. You can focus your energy on a single instrument, to begin with, and once you master that, you can definitely move on to other segments.
2. Perform thorough research about your selected area
The internet is a never-ending space for exploration available at your fingertips. Moreover, most online resources are free to use at any given time. This means that you have the most extensive cache of information at your disposal. It is best to use this portal to conduct extensive research into the field of music that you want to explore. Whether it is vocals or instruments, you must start with proper online research.
During this research phase, try to understand everything you’ll need to start learning. Discover what kind of instrument you’ll need to purchase and where to find the best deal on it. Also, learn about any prerequisites for learning the basics, like whether you need a certain qualification or not. If you want to take a proper course online, you also need to look into its reviews and client feedback because you don’t want to sit through several days of training only to realize that there was no actual learning in it.
3. Begin with the basic theory
Learning music is like any other subject. You need to start by focusing on your foundations. This is best achieved by focusing on the basics first. Fundamental theory, in particular, is extremely beneficial because it allows you to understand the depth and complexity of the field that you’ve chosen. You learn about the elements and structure of music composition while also making you proficient in the language of music itself. Just like you would start by learning the alphabet if you were going to learn a spoken language, you need to thoroughly study and understand the fundamental elements of the musical language first.
4. Take it slow and steady
It will be naïve of you to assume that you’ll suddenly go from a novice to Steve Vai status in a few days or even weeks. Many people believe they can rush through their lessons because they are fast learners. And while their capabilities might be true, going fast not only ruins the momentum, but you fail to fully embrace the fascinating new art that you’ve set out to learn. Therefore, it is crucial to take the process slow and steady irrespective of your learning capacity. Enjoy every moment of it because the soothing art of music deserves that. Select the beginner pieces first, and ensure you have them at your fingertips. Become so proficient that you play these pieces with your eyes shut. This is when you know you are ready to move forward.
5. Make sure that you practice regularly
They say practice makes perfect, and this statement holds its weight in gold. The same is true for music as well. No matter if it is an instrument or vocals, the more time and effort you invest in practice, the better you become at learning the music of your choice. Set a particular time and duration during the day to practice. Follow this schedule religiously to achieve the best possible results.
6. Set realistic goals
Many people can get carried away with their passion for learning music. They can set unrealistic expectations like being able to perform in front of a crowd within a week or something similarly absurd. And when these goals are not fulfilled, they obviously lose all motivation. In order to avoid this, it is best to stick with practical milestones. You can make the journey easier by breaking your final goal into smaller objectives to achieve them faster.
7. Get professional help where necessary
The internet might be free and extremely easy to access, but it’s not always comprehensive. At the same time, you may not be able to find the same exposure and learning from a digital source that you can from a professional face-to-face. So, don’t be shy to invest a little bit where necessary and seek help when you think it is needed.
Learning music is like learning any other language. Although it is more about passion, it is still a learning curve that requires certain considerations. Obviously, you need to find your true love first. Once you know which vocal genre or musical instrument you want to focus on, you can start with the basics, learn the fundamentals and polish your skills through practice. Together, these tips can make you fluent in the language of music within a short time.